Stress can make people prickly. Crisis can uncover both the worst and the best in people. You need some grace, and your spouse needs some grace too. Communication becomes even more important during difficult times. Here are some things your spouse needs to hear you say right now.

You and your spouse might be stuck at home together, or one of you might be involved in a riskier-than-normal work situation being on the front lines in the fight against COVID-19. Your kids might be home from school and driving you crazy. Emotions are running high. All those factors and more mean you need to take communication with your spouse more seriously than ever.

So here are some things your spouse needs to hear you say during this crisis season.

  1. I Love You!

I’m so grateful God put you in my life. I can’t imagine going through this crisis without you. The disruption all around us makes me realize more than ever how wonderful a gift you are to me. I love you with my whole body, mind, and soul! I’m sorry I’ve not said it more. I love you not just for what you do, but for who you are.

  1. How Are You?

I see you really stressed with the changes going on in our lives and in our world. I’d like to hear what’s going on in your heart. Please don’t feel you have to pretend with me. How is all of this affecting you on the inside? How are you doing, really? What are the feelings you’re wrestling with?

  1. I Need You.

Even when I might look OK on the outside, I’m struggling too. I can’t go through this without you. When my heart gets especially anxious I keep coming back to the thought that you and I are in this together. I need you beside me. You give me the confidence to know I don’t have to figure things out completely on my own.

  1. I’m Sorry.

The ways I’ve reacted to these stressful times has not always been the most generous and kind. Forgive me for how I’ve sometimes let my anxiety, fear, and frustration make me prickly in how I respond to you. I’m sorry for not always being the safest place for you. I’m determined to be the spouse you need, and if I have to say I’m Sorry again, I will.

  1. What are You Afraid Of?

This pandemic is making all of us afraid in some way. What is it you’re most afraid of? Someone in our family getting sick or dying? Me or you dying? Our kids? Not having the emotional or mental strength to carry on? Not knowing the future? Our financial circumstances? I want to be a safe place where you can voice and work through the fears you have.

  1. How Can I Help?

As much as I try, I’m not always the most sensitive to what you need from me. Forgive me. Can you let me know in what ways I can be there for you? Are there practical things that would lessen your stress that I can do? Listen in certain ways? I want to help support you; let me know how I can do that.

  1. I’m Scared.

Perhaps I shouldn’t be scared, but I am. Not knowing the future – how long this pandemic will last, or how it will affect our family for sure – make me feel inadequate. This disruption makes me afraid of ….. It helps me to just talk to you about how afraid I am. Don’t try to fix it; you can’t. But you help me by listening.

  1. We’ll Make it Through Together.

Regardless of what troubles we may face, we’re going to walk through this together. We’re going to support each other, and together address the problems that come. No matter what happens, I’m going to stay engaged with you as we figure out each new step. When this is over, you and I will be more connected than ever.

  1. Thank You!

I don’t say it often enough, but Thank You! Thank you for being my husband (or wife). I’m grateful for the times you still make me laugh, for helping out in so many ways, and for just being beside me in this crisis. God gave me someone very special when He gave me you, and I thank Him for you too.

  1. You’re Safe With Me.

Sometimes I can get preoccupied with my own anxiety. But I want to be a place where you are safe. I want you to be able to talk to me about what you’re worried about, what you’re afraid of, and how you’re doing. I want you to be able to ask me for what you need. My arms and my heart are a place where you can just be you.

  1. Let’s Pray.

This crisis is more than either you or I can handle on our own. Let’s pray! “Jesus, we need You! Please come and be with us in a special way. Protect us from harm. Give us Your wisdom in knowing how to move forward. Give us Your gift of peace. And let Your love flow through us to each other, and to those around us. Amen.”

  1. I Will Always Love You!

You are my life, and I love you! I can never say that enough. I can’t imagine there not being an us. In my prayers, I ask God to help me to be the kind of husband (or wife) that you need. I’m not sure I deserve you, but I love you. When I imagine the future, the only future that makes sense is one with you right beside me. And I will love you forever and ever, Amen!

Your spouse needs to hear you say these things. Stretch yourself, and say them. Use these examples, make the words your own, and talk. Open your heart. Invite your spouse to open theirs. And this crisis can be a catalyst to bring you closer together.

Your Turn: How many of these things have you said to your spouse in the past week? What’s the next thing you’re going to say? Leave a comment below.  things your spouse needs to hear you say

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  • In a crisis such as this pandemic your spouse needs to hear you say a number of things. Here are twelve of them. They’re not that hard, but they’re important.   Tweet that.

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